Jurassic World and Soft-Canon: a Counteractive and Convoluted Conundrum

This article is a guest contribution by Thomas Fishenden.

When it comes to the Jurassic Park franchise, it is safe to say that there has been a lot of world building over the duration of the five installments which Universal Studios have produced. It is certainly safe to say that a lot has been added to the franchise over the years. The films have added new locations and new animals and characters, whilst the secondary materials – such as the viral marketing – have aimed to add in more continuity between the sequel installments. Canon, however, has not always been maintained – and there have always been issues which have plagued the Jurassic franchise and the continuity it shares between its various outings. We have seen Universal and Colin Trevorrow take steps towards addressing these issues in recent years – but unfortunately, a recent announcement during the press for Jurassic World: The Live Tour has us concerned about the future canonical consistencies within the franchise.

In the past, Colin Trevorrow has stated that he is the overseer of the franchise – and would oversee issues, such as Canon, moving forwards to ensure better continuity and cohesion across the property in the future. This had many of us excited, as it seemed to indicate that both Colin and the studio behind him were willing to take meaningful steps towards building a much more coherent cinematic universe. Indeed, it appeared that the Jurassic franchise would take a similar approach to other great franchises like Star Wars and Marvel, building outwards with meaningful connections to the very core pillars which first established the franchise. For a while, this seemed to hold true – with inconsistencies around the geography of the Isla Nublar report in both Jurassic World and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom openly addressed by the director, who proceeded to work with the team behind the viral marketing and surrounding canonical materials (Chaos Theorem) to build a meaningful explanation which alleviated the canon-breaking implications that the change in island geography had. Furthermore, the team working behind the scenes had the opportunity to build upon the background of the franchise – adding in new implications for the canon which alleviated some of the strained connections that the narratives of the more recent films had. It is safe to say that the Dinosaur Protection Group website, and other subsequent ventures, did a lot to build upon the canon in meaningful ways – addressing the concerns of long term fans and creating much more of a cinematic ‘universe’ than we had ever seen for the franchise before.

Whilst the Dinosaur Protection Group faded into obscurity after the cinematic debut of Fallen Kingdom, it appeared canon would continue to grow and expand within the franchise. This brings us to Jurassic World: The Live Tour. Press Events for the tour (see Chris’s coverage from an event in April of this year) got fans excited – with a clear focus on developing a story which could fit within the confines of a pre-established Jurassic World narrative. Indeed, whilst some of the live show would build upon the back of the blockbuster film, showcasing the Indominus rampage on Isla Nublar, the clear majority was stated to be a brand-new story exploring a top-secret InGen Facility in Chile. The story follows Doctor Kate Walker, who was working with dinosaurs in a similar behavioral capacity to Owen Grady, and has essentially been pitched as the other half of the IBRIS project which we see on screen within Jurassic World. This, again, is a project which has always been relatively secretive on-screen, so fans were excited to be able to learn even more about this new piece of lore which was sure to build upon the fundamental ideals explored within the first Jurassic World film. Anticipation was high – and this was only exasperated further by the debut of Battle at Big Rock, which explored more new characters within the same universe, after the events of Fallen Kingdom.

Unfortunately, however, it seems that the story continuity will not last.

Fast forward to the start of November, when the Live Tour is kicking off with its worldwide premiere. Colin was interviewed by the Social Media team working on behalf of Feld Entertainment., and in an Instagram story on the official tour account, Colin was asked where the events of the show fit within the timeline of Jurassic World. His response was as follows:

“We have something we call soft canon – which is that it happens, but it also exists within its own space. You know, Feld’s writers and creators made a new and original story which exists within the context of Jurassic World and I think people are really going to love it.”

This statement is great when we consider how passionate Colin is for the franchise, and it is nice to see how excited he is about the live show – but it also poses a very real problem for the franchise moving forwards. That statement of ‘soft-canon’, and the careful phrasing of this show ‘existing within the context of Jurassic World’, has set alarm bells ringing for many fans – suggesting that the show may not be a meaningful fit within the pre-determined canon of the franchise, as was previously implied. Soft-canon itself is an alarming phrase, considering its what ‘Jurassic World Evolution’ is described as — something that is not canon at all, but adheres to the rules of the universal while carving out its alternate reality.

This becomes problematic as a universe which is built without canon in mind can very quickly crumble and implode if not handle with a degree of oversight and brand management. Disney know this all too well – and it is the reason why the Star Wars Expanded Universe is now referred to as ‘Legends’. Here, Disney told too many stories which conflicted with one another and posed potential problems for the canons of the franchise so they had to restart this from the ground up and discount any of their old stories as being non-canon unless reintroduced into modern films or properties. Whilst this soured many Star Wars fans, Disney could get away with this because of the sheer scale and scope of Star Wars and its fan-base, with many more pre-established stories already under the franchise’s belt. Jurassic, in contrast, is a relatively new and expanding franchise with a smaller fan base, and so the movements made to grow the brand really need to be considered and thoughtful to connect with audiences and build a meaningful and consistent fan base. Therefore, the term ‘soft canon’ being thrown out so early in the growth of the franchise has both I and many other Jurassic fans concerned about the future direction of the franchise.

It should also be noted that Star War’s non-canon ‘legends’ media only consists of expanded fiction that came out prior to The Force Awakens. Everything since then has been carefully cultivated to fit within the ever expanding galaxy, working with their brand team, writers, and directors as to not contradict the films, but add to them all while telling their own stories. Why Jurassic cannot do this, especially given their stable creative team, and smaller universe size, is a frustrating mystery.

Whilst I appreciate that it is hard to canonise a Live Tour (other properties like ‘Marvel Universe Live’ opted to tell entirely separate stories), I think straddling the line between canon and ‘soft canon’ is an attempt for Jurassic to have its cake and eat it too. Whilst it’s a humble attempt at developing upon the IP, I feel that it misses the mark and misses what fans have truly been clamoring for – which are stories which will have larger impacts on the overall franchise whilst enabling them to connect with these characters and these stories in much more meaningful ways. The attitude of utilizing ‘soft canon’ poses a worry for fans, as it brings into question upcoming properties like Camp Cretaceous, and where they will stand in terms of both canon and impact on the other properties within the franchise. Whilst there is certainly an argument for these being more children’s tailored properties, it is important to note that even in that regard a canonical middle ground is achievable. Take, for example, Star Wars: The Clone Wars. This property found a way to tell stories within a pre-existing universe whilst not damaging canon. In fact, Clone Wars could build upon the pre-established in interesting and meaningful ways – connecting with both older and younger fans alike. This was due not only to the creative vision of Dave Filoni, but also due to the creative oversight and brand consistency which Disney and the Star Wars team had in place – and something which Jurassic seems to be sorely missing at this moment in time.

For the Jurassic World Live Tour, the format itself doesn’t entirely mesh with real world antics – so we understand that the action and context that which the story plays out may not be 1:1 to canon. But there is no reasons the overarching story itself of Dr. Kate Walker, InGens facility in Chile, and the events that subsequently played out cannot be canon. A simple “The story is canon, the action within and execution of it is soft canon” would be far more understandable. It was stated numerous times that Colin Trevorrow was involved from the start to make sure the story is hard canon. So what happened?

Make no mistake – I, and many others, are excited for new stories to be explored within the Jurassic universe. Many of us have clamoured for more from this brand for years, so the fact that we are finally getting this is exciting, and is a true testament to the creative passion of individuals like Colin Trevorrow. But, with that said, oversight is important too – and it’s important that this is built into a brand with solid foundations so that these stories can continue to be told for years to come. With that in mind, an organisation like Chaos Theorem or someone else altogether really need to be empowered to get more involved in the day-to-day canon of this universe, so that we can finally have something which feels cohesive. Continuity has always been a matter of discussion for Jurassic – and in some ways, poor continuity adds to the charm of these films. But, if Jurassic is to ever grow into a franchise with the power to do more than beat back other big names at the box office, then it is crucial that canon is considered, and that the time is taken to build a rich universe for these stories to take place within.

What do you all think? Where do you stand on canon in cinema, and is it important to you that these side projects tie in? Sound of in the comments below!


Uniting the Franchise: How Jurassic World 3 Should Incorporate Dinosaur Designs from ‘Park’ Films

Art by Neemz.

2021 is swiftly approaching. Jurassic World 3 is already shaping up to be an event unlike anything we have seen since the original Jurassic Park. With Sam Neill, Laura Dern, and Jeff Goldblum all returning for major roles in the upcoming film, it is easy to see that we are in store for a movie with some serious callbacks to the film that started it all. With the return of old human characters, Jurassic World 3 is posed in the perfect position to be a film that showcases the original aspects of Jurassic Park side by side with the new ideas put forth in the Jurassic World movies. We can talk about the human characters until the sun goes down, but at the end of the day, the highlight of Jurassic has always been the dinosaurs.

One complaint that we see time and time again is how different some of the dinosaurs look in the newer films. While some fans view these differences as a major drawback, it’s time to take a hard look at how these perceived differences actually present a unique opportunity to showcase exactly what these dinosaurs are: genetically engineered, theme park…creatures. In other words, these dinosaurs are simply lab-created animals melding natural science and science fiction.

So today, let’s take a look at some specific examples of these differences. Let’s start with a classic: the mighty Stegosaurus. We first got a glimpse at the creature on Isla Sorna in The Lost World Jurassic Park. This Jurassic Park era Stego was on the more athletic side. As you can see below, it featured a straight tail and narrow head, which featured a beak of some sort. Its athleticism was put on full display when it sensed a threat in Sarah Harding approaching its infant.

Now, let us compare that to the Jurassic World era Stegosaurus. The new creation featured a heavier retro build, with a drooping tail and a wider head (with lips instead of a beak). Their coloration is slightly different, and their skin texture is entirely different than their park counterparts. We’re first introduced to them roaming Nublar’s Gyrosphere Valley in Jurassic World, presumably engineered under Masrani’s supervision to achieve certain goals.

In a universe where scientists have been cloning and creating new dinosaurs for over twenty five years, these differences can be explained by genetic manipulation. Perhaps the old Stegosauruses were just too agile and destructive with their more athletic build and size. Maybe the Jurassic World scientists realized a beefier build appealed to the parks older demographs who imagine dinosaurs with more outdated views. Questions like these are exactly the kind of lore I believe are ripe for answering in Jurassic World 3. Before we move on to how exactly the movie can present those answers in a natural way, let’s take a look at another dinosaur example.

The Ankylosaurus is well-known for the armor plating all along its back, but the different eras of Jurassic took the animal in otherwise different directions. We first see the Jurassic Park era Anyklosaur in Jurassic Park 3 as it lumbers underneath the tree some of our characters are hiding out in. It touts rougher scale-based armor with a smaller, colorful head. It has a narrow and angular build overall and is not overtly large.

Once again, let’s look at the Jurassic World edition Ankylosaurus that we see duke it out with the Indominous Rex. Not only is the Jurassic World era animal bigger, it has defined armor plating and a larger, uniform-color head. Just like the Stegosaurus, it sports a bulkier, stockier build overall. It’s been theorized that ‘World’s’ Anylosaurs are female counterparts to ‘Park’s’ males.

Ankylosaurs and Stegosaurs are only scratching the surface. Numerous other species have distinct sub-species within the Jurassic films, with 3 different Pteranodon breeds, over 3 different breeds of Velociraptors, plus a variety of sexual dimorphism seen within Parasaurs, Brachiosaurs, and more.

The best step for Jurassic to take is to embrace the differences and use them as a tool to enrich the deep mythology the universe has already given to us. I mean, who wouldn’t want to see the Jurassic Park 3 raptors running around Blue? That sort of variety in appearance is a treasure trove of rich story that has largely only been explored by the DPG marketing campaign for Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom. It’s important to not stifle that variety, but embrace it fully, and bring all these elements from various films together.

However, not every difference is a canonical variation – the T. rex of Jurassic World being a prime example. Many fans have complained she looks off from her Jurassic Park appearance – and it’s true – the design has changed in more ways than just aging. This love for Jurassic Park’s iconic designs is another prime reason to bring them back. Not just nostalgia – they’re some of the most iconic creature designs in cinema. Embrace the masterclass work of Stan Winston Studios, Crash McCreery and ILM that laid the foundation for Jurassic World.

We know that Jurassic World 3 director Colin Trevorrow plans to expand the universe even more and deal with these creatures on a much larger scale now that they’re part of our world. One of the best ways to explore this evolution naturally, while keeping it tied to the past films is to simply go back to the older, forgotten dinosaurs. Likewise, we can finally explore how these various subspecies may interact – what would a crossbreed of a Jurassic Park female raptor and JP3 male raptor look like? Or would they never have the chance, fighting for territory instead?

What makes the Jurassic Park novel so great is that it tackles the science aspect of the story head on – the novel version of Wu has candid conversations with Hammond about manipulating the DNA of the dinosaurs to alter their physical characteristics and change the way they behave. If we’re trying to find inspiration, that’s where to start the search. Having a character in the movie, like Wu, explain the differences between all the animals on screen only serves to deepen the canon in a positive way. Not only that, it serves as a natural explanation for why Project IBRIS with the raptors at Jurassic World was (eventually) successful compared to the more aggressive raptors from the previous movies.

What are your thoughts on the dinosaur differences? Is this a purposeful creation from Jurassic Park scientists, or do you think the filmmakers were just looking to switch up the styles? If you believe the science backs it up, would you like to see it explained on screen? Sound off in the comments below and tell us how you would explain the uniqueness of the dinosaurs!

ILM Shares Dino-Filled Jurassic World Battle at Big Rock Making-Of!

Jurassic World’s live action short film ‘Battle at Big Rock’ released over one month ago, but has continued to earn the interest of Jurassic fans online. Perhaps one of the largest points of discussion have been among those trying to discern the designs of the all-new dinosaurs, which were obscured in chaos and darkness in the short film. Thankfully, ILM has just released a ‘Behind the Magic’ making of for Battle at Big Rock, which show off the new dinosaurs in all their glory!

Check it out below:

The video shows the exciting process the short Jurassic film underwent while being brought to life: from shooting the previs in VR, to bringing the ILM model department into the mix with practical dinosaur reference models. Further, they’ve confirmed what fans have suspected: the differences in design between the male and female Nasutoceratops (revealing the Mattel toy is in fact based on the male), and of course, revealing the final design of the adult Allosaurus!

The male Nasutoceratops is in the back, with longer horns, and harsher more defined angles, while the female is softer with more rounded features. Both sport similar color schemes, though the male favors reds for his patterns while the female seems to favor oranges. While it’s hard to say, it seems to be safe to assume the baby is a male based upon its colors.

The Allosaurus (below) went through numerous design changes, and the final ILM model is different than that seen in the previs, or animatronic pictures released by Colin Trevorrow. The toys released are all based upon the older non-final design, which was more monstrous and not very recognizable as its namesake – however the final design looks appropriately Allosaurid and Jurassic!

There are a ton of great details in the video, mostly the dinosaur designs shown in their full glory, so be sure to watch it and take it all in!

What are your thoughts on the dinosaur designs in Battle at Big Rock? Sound off in the comments below, and as always, stay tuned for the latest news!

Check out Our Gallery of over 50 HD Screen-Caps from Jurassic World ‘Battle at Big Rock’!

Battle at Big Rock is here, and since it’s come out I’ve had it on repeat trying to pour over every detail. To help truly appreciate the visuals, I frame-by-framed the Jurassic World short film, and grabbed the best screenshots I could of the brand new dinosaur designs. Admittedly, YouTube compression is atrocious, and this has led to sub-quality images – but until an official ProRes or 4K release is made available, this will have to do.

Haven’t watched ‘Battle at Big Rock’ yet? Well what are you waiting for!

‘Big Rock’ was written by Emily Carmichael and directed by Colin Trevorrow, with Larry Fong as the cinematographer. The short follows an all new cast consisting of André Holland (Moonlight), Natalie Martinez (Under the Dome), Melody Hurd (Fatherhood) and Pierson Salvador. Music is by Jurassic newcomer Amie Doherty.

Set in the Californian wilderness, a family of four encounter more than they bargained for as dinosaurs turn their fun into a situation of survival. Check out the HD images below, where the brand new adult Allosaurus made its debut, plus the female, male, and baby Nasutoceratops designs were unveiled.

Want more now? The new ‘Battle at Big Rock’ dinosaurs have toys from Mattel available now!

You can order the Dual Attack Allosaurus and Dual Attack Nasutoceratops from Amazon now!

Now that ‘Big Rock’ is here, what are your thoughts on the short film, the dinosaur designs, and what it means for Jurassic Park going forward? Sound off in the comments below and of course, keep your eyes on Jurassic Outpost for all the latest news!


All New Official Jurassic World Short-film ‘Battle at Big Rock’ Now Available to Watch!

It’s finally here – Jurassic World now has an expanded universe. ‘Battle at Big Rock’, and all new Jurassic World short film set one year after the events of Fallen Kingdom, just made its debut on FX. Set in the Californian wilderness, a family of four encounter more than they bargained for as dinosaurs turn their fun into a situation of survival.

‘Battle at Big Rock’ features the never before seen Nasutoceratops (and baby), and introduces the adult Allosaurus (with an animatronic from Legacy Effects), which was previously seen in Fallen Kingdom as a juvenile. ‘Big Rock’ was written by Emily Carmichael and directed by Colin Trevorrow, with Larry Fong as the cinematographer. The short follows an all new cast consisting of André Holland (Moonlight), Natalie Martinez (Under the Dome), Melody Hurd (Fatherhood) and Pierson Salvador. Music is by Jurassic newcomer Amie Doherty.

Watch the short film below!

Warning – detailed spoilers for Battle at Big Rock below:

Battle at Big Rock opens with an ominous newscast reporting on numerous dinosaur sightings in the Californian countryside, before opening on a family camping in a public campground. Shortly after being introduced to our characters, some Nasutoceratops wonder into the campsite inflicting fear and distaste, sparking remarks along the lines of “Oh no, it’s one of them” “What is itdoing all the way up here?”. We realize dinosaurs sightings are a thing people know about, are not happy about, but do not fully expect. We also learn there was a recent incident that turned ugly, though it apparently involved carnivores unlike the herbivores in the campsite, as the families daughter confidently states.

But then, not all is as it seems, and a hungry Allosaurus hunting the Nasutoceratops family reveals itself. Carnage ensues. At some point in the fight, a second Nasutoceratops charges in – the father, a buck – sexual dimorphism is apparent in the species, as not only is he larger, with longer horns, but his colors appear slightly different. While Jurassic World features male and female dinosaurs, this the first time since Jurassic Park 3 that sexual dimorphism has been made apparent on screen.

When the short film makes its end, the family shaken but alive, and eerie Jurassic music kicks in. The credits paint a serious picture – dinosaurs are part of our world, and home footage of various dinosaur encounters plays, such as a scenario where Compy’s are attacking a little girl. This is perhaps the clearest look at what Jurassic World 3 will be yet. We’re now living in a new era of wonder and thrills, where dinosaurs and humankind must learn to coexist…

Stay tuned for HD pictures from Battle at Big Rock!

Want more now? The new ‘Battle at Big Rock’ dinosaurs have toys from Mattel available now!

You can order the Dual Attack Allosaurus and Dual Attack Nasutoceratops from Amazon now!

Now that ‘Big Rock’ is here, what are your thoughts on the short film, the dinosaur designs, and what it means for Jurassic Park going forward? Sound off in the comments below and of course, keep your eyes on Jurassic Outpost for all the latest news!


First Images and Details from Jurassic World Battle at Big Rock Revealed!

Battle at Big Rock has finally been announced and is headed our way this Sunday on FX. Jurassic World and Battle at Big Rock director Colin Trevorrow recently sat down with Collider writer Steve Weintraub to answer some of the burning questions we have all been wondering since rumors of the production started circulating.

The new short film clocks in at eight minutes long and features a star-studded cast of André Holland and Natalie Martinez, as well as new child actors Melody Hurd and Pierson Salvador. The film is set at “Big Rock National Park,” a fictional location Trevorrow says is about 20 miles away from the Lockwood Estate from Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom. The film will also star some new dinosaurs as well, including the much anticipated Nascutoceratops, a dinosaur Trevorrow describes as “a beautiful herbivore that feels like a Texas Longhorn.” We will also see a fully grown Allosaurus, promising some large scale dino skermishes! The coolest part? We will be getting a “massive animatronic” to bring us right into the action.

Much like we expected, Battle at Big Rock was shot in Ireland last winter in a redwood forest outside of Dublin. It was written by both Colin Trevorrow and newcomer to the Jurassic franchise, Emily Carmichael. This is the same team that is writing Jurassic World 3, so Battle at Big Rock should really set the stage for what we can expect to see from the new film in 2021. Battle is set to air immediately after Jurassic World on FX on Sunday and promises to be released online right after it airs. New music was specifically written for the film by Amie Doherty and composed at the famous Abbey Road Studios. Cinematographer Larry Fong was tapped to work on the project as well.

Since originally publishing this article, new details have become available. Read on for the latest!

BATTLE AT BIG ROCK will premiere exclusively at 9:50pm on FX on Sunday, September 15 following the broadcast of Jurassic World (in each respective timezone). The short will be available for streaming immediately following the West Coast broadcast on FX at 10pm PST on NBC.com, Jurassic World.com and the official Jurassic World social media channels. That means it will air on the east coast 3 hours before it releases online – so use your DVR’s!

Will you be tuning in for Battle at Big Rock on Sunday? What kind of story are you expecting and how are you hoping it will set the stage for Jurassic World 3? Let’s hear all your comments, questions, and story speculations in the comments below!

Source: Collider


Jurassic World Short Film ‘Battle at Big Rock’ Debuting this Sunday on FX!

It’s finally official. Jurassic World Battle at Big Rock, the mysterious project with toys on shelves since May of this year, has been announced — and it’s releasing in 5 days!

Director Colin Trevorrow took to Twitter moments ago to reveal its poster, cast, debut date and more:

The short takes place one year after the events of the last film in Big Rock National Park, where dinosaurs are now living in our world. The story follows a family of four whose encounter with these wild animals becomes a terrifying fight for survival. No word on the debut time, but we know it debuts on FX, which will begin airing Jurassic World around 7:20pm EST – so watch that time slot.

Big Rock will debut online immediately after airing on TV.

The cast of Battle at Big Rock

‘Big Rock’ was written by Emily Carmichael and directed by Colin Trevorrow, with Larry Fong as the cinematographer. The short follows an all new cast consisting of André Holland (Moonlight), Natalie Martinez (Under the Dome), Melody Hurd (Fatherhood) and Pierson Salvador. Music is by Jurassic newcomer Amie Doherty.

Stay tuned for more Big Rock coverage in the coming days – and as always, sound off in the comments below and let us know what you’re most excited to see in the new Jurassic spin-off!


‘Battle at Big Rock’ Nasutoceratops Added to Jurassic World Evolution!

Jurassic World Evolution has received free update 1.9 today, which enacts various bug fixes and adds an exciting new dinosaur to the game: the Battle at Big Rock Nasutoceratops! Evolution provides the best look yet at the brand new Ceratopsians design, which is the perfect mix of rugged and majestic.

Check out the trailer below!

This can be added to the long list of Battle at Big Rock tie-ins which have been released without the short film being acknowledged. This list includes a retracted update to Jurassic World Alive, Mattel toys being released in May of this year, and Takara Tomy toys being released recently. It’c clear Big Rock is meant to be a big deal with all the tie-ins, however the silence about the project itself remains deafening.

While the trailer doesn’t mention the short film, upon installing the update and booting up the game you’re met with this message (courtesy of Twitter user Ikkviper):

Does this mean Battle at Big Rock will be announced and released soon? We’re keeping our fingers crossed, but are not holding our breath. Something is going on behind the scenes, and while we hope it’s good news, Jurassic has long been plagued by mysterious cancellations that have us all a little wary.

As of this time, the redesigned Allosaurus from Big Rock (which had an animatronic made by Legacy Effects for the short) has not been added to the game. It’s unclear if Frontier plans to add it to the game, or keep their older Allosaurus design, which was also different from Fallen Kingdom.

Are you a fan of the Nasutoceratops design, and do you think Big Rock will be released soon? Sound off in the comments below and let us know your thoughts!


Opinion: It’s Time We Get Some Answers About Jurassic World’s ‘Battle at Big Rock’ Short Film

This article is a guest contribution by Thomas Fishenden.

February has come to be an exciting time for Jurassic World fans – with New York Toy Fair usually leading to the reveal of a plethora of Jurassic merchandise which fans of the franchise will have the opportunity to sink their teeth into over the coming year. This year’s Toy Fair brought more with it than usual, however, with Mattel’s sales reps giving us a tantalization tease in the form of a secret which they weren’t meant to let slip on the show floor. According to them, fans of their toyline could look forward to both a Nasutoceratops and a brand-new Allosaurus joining their line, modeled on an upcoming live action short film which was set to debut before Universal’s ‘Hobbs and Shaw’ – the next instalment in their popular Fast and Furious franchise.

During May, two brand-new dual attack figures from Mattel hit store shelves, featuring new branding which called out this short in the form of a small graphics stating that these characters were ‘As seen in Battle at Big Rock’. But, more than two weeks after the release of Hobbs & Shaw, this highly anticipated short film is still nowhere to be seen.

The absence didn’t come as a massive surprise to Outpost. It was already heard that there had been a little bit of trouble over the experimental films budget, which had reportedly exceeded the ten-million-dollar threshold. With such a high-cost for what was to be a smaller story, it appears the studio decided late in the game that they had wanted a more traditional content delivery method. This is most likely a step to try and turn a profit on the project, given the large cost which ended up being attached to it.

However, all this silence and behind the scenes uncertainty has led to a growth of pessimism within the online community. Rather than build excitement and anticipation, many Jurassic fans are now worried whether this project will ever see the light of day.

Despite several toys with ‘Battle at Big Rock’ branding already being available for several months now, Universal Pictures have still yet to acknowledge that this short film even exists. This radio silence from the studio has, understandably, got many members of the fan base worried about the direction this project may take. You may remember that, recently, we debuted some storyboards from a scrapped Jurassic Park: The Lost World animated show, which never saw the light of day. It is safe to say that cancelled projects like this, combined with a track record of production troubles for the Jurassic franchise have led to many fans becoming used to exciting new projects suddenly disappearing from the Universal release calendar. Even more troubling than this is the fact that Walmart (who have had a solid track-record with carrying Mattel products) have now decided to drop the ‘Dual Attack’ line altogether – suggesting that this may be a move to remove the Allosaurus and Nasutoceratops from shelves altogether. It strikes us as bizarre that, even before the project’s release, Universal seem to be taking steps to kill the tie-in synergy which they pushed for the short.

Whether Big Rock was intended to debut as a secret project or not, it is safe to say that Jurassic fans now know this project exists. Continuing to maintain a degree of secrecy when products from the short are already available seems to be a gross misjudgement of the community, and one which we hoped is rectified sooner rather than later. We’re hopeful that the powers that be will hear the concerns of the fanbase, and will let us know that this Battle is far from over. There are still many more adventures to explore in a Jurassic World.

Update


‘Jurassic World Alive’ Expands with Exciting New Sanctuaries Update!

The ‘Jurassic World Alive’ released their 1.8 update, which now includes Sanctuaries!

In the game, the DPG uses Sanctuaries as safe places to feed and care for prehistoric creatures. You can feed, interact, and play with any of creatures that are placed in a Sanctuary. Feeding time includes goats for the carnivores, while herbivores get bunches of greens! He’s gonna eat the goat?!

While not indicative of gameplay, the live-action CG dinosaurs in the ad are quite exciting – it’s rare for Jurassic to see film quality visuals in expanded materials, and we’ll happily take more like it! Now if only they’d feature some of the more obscure dinosaurs from the films that we didn’t get to spend as much time with. For a real look at the update, check out the images below!

The DPG has built dinosaur Sanctuaries all over the world to help DPG members protect and care for their creatures. Place your creatures in these Sanctuaries to feed, play, and interact with them, then collect their DNA. Work together with other players to improve your Sanctuaries, care for each other’s creatures, and get more rewards!

Work with other DPG members to care for the creatures to receive DNA and rewards that help level up the Sanctuaries. This allows players to get up close and personal with their dinosaurs, and build a more authentic relationship with their digital prehistoric friends. Being able to play and feed the creatures makes the Sanctuaries feel a bit like a Jurassic Tamagotchi!

In other ‘Alive’ news, the ‘Battle at Big Rock’ Allosaurus and Nasutoceratops will be coming to the game in a future release! A first look was dropped on Twitter earlier this week:

While the Nasutoceratops looks to be an incredible addition to the Jurassic roster, we’re not so sure about that “Allosaurus” – in fact there has been some speculation online that it may not be an Allosaurus at all, as it doesn’t look anything like the species in question. However, the game labels it as such, and it does match the equally non-Allosaur Mattel toy. If Big Rock does feature that design, it means the Allosaurus design attempts are 0/2, but maybe third time is the charm with Jurassic World 3?

Design issues aside, we’re even more intrigued by what Battle at Big Rock may be – from toys to game tie ins, it’s being treated more and more like the films themselves, and not just a simply web feature. Even stranger is how the external media is being released, but nothing has been officially announced. We’re not sure what is going on, but we are excited!

If you play Jurassic World Alive, are you enjoying the Sanctuaries? Also, what new features would you like to see added to the game? Let us know in the comments!